Azulejos is painted tin-glazed ceramic tile work widespread in Portugal and Spain. In Portugal, you will find them outdoors and indoors on walls in private and public buildings. The variety of azulejos reaches from simple reproduced white-blue tiles to big detailed pictures that are indeed real pieces of art. Similar kind of tile work has been traditionally produced in some other European countries (like Italy and Netherlands). This kind of tile work in Europe origins from Moorish culture and first it was applied on the Iberian peninsula.
On the picture, azulejos on the facade of the Vera Cruz Church in Aveiro, Portugal (see map). A real masterpiece is however the scenes from the Portuguese history decorating the walls of the Sao Bento railway station in Porto (>>>).
If you want to know more about azulejos and during your Portugal journey stay in Lisbon, just go to the National Tile Museum (>>>). It is located in the former Convent of Madre Deus (convents were banished from Portugal some time ago, so it is a state museum). Even if you are not an art fan, following the visiting route you will see how the art of azulejos and its technique developed with time.
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